China blasts Trump’s new tariff threat as ‘blackmail’

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China’s government has denounced President Donald Trump’s threat of tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods as blackmail and warned it would respond with “strong countermeasures.”

The Commerce Ministry on Tuesday gave no details but said Beijing is ready to “defend the interests of the Chinese people and enterprises.”

Trump ordered the U.S. Trade Representative to prepare new tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese imports on Monday, stepping up a dispute that companies and investors worry could drag down global trade and economic growth.
A Commerce Ministry statement criticized the U.S. measures as “extreme pressure and blackmail.” It said, “If the U.S. side becomes irrational and issues the list, China must adopt comprehensive measures of the same quantity and quality in order to take strong countermeasures.”

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